New Camerata Opera to Present ‘Flesh & Stone’ This November

By David Salazar

New Camerata Opera will present “Flesh & Stone” this November.

The triple-bill of song cycles by Matthew Recio, Britten, and Heggie will be directed by John de los Santos with musical direction by Jason Wirth.

Barbara Porto and Kristin Renee Young will present Recio’s “Statues in London” while Chris Carr and Victor Khodadad will sing Britten’s “Seven Sonnets of Michelangelo.” Finally, Emily Hughes and Anna Tonna will present Heggie’s “Into the Fire.”

“The genesis of Flesh & Stone stemmed from my love of song cycles and figurative sculpture,” said de los Santos in an official press statement. “It was over a decade ago when I first discovered Benjamin Britten’s ‘Seven Sonnets of Michelangelo,’ using the Renaissance master’s own poems. I knew one day I had to create a physical realization of the work. Not long after, I found Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer‘s ‘Into the Fire,’ told from the perspective of the underrepresented sculptress, Camille Claudel. I’d been an admirer of her work and story even before I began working in opera, so it seemed an obvious pairing with Britten’s cycle to detail the heartache of two tortured geniuses. When I proposed the double-bill to New Camerata Opera, they had the brilliant idea of including a third piece, ‘Statues in London,’ composed in 2017 by Matthew Recio to Jenna Lanzaro‘s libretto. While this newly formed triple-bill combines three unique compositional perspectives, each piece details loss and deep longing with a direct tie to the powerful endurance of sculpture.”

“Flesh & Stone” will kick off at the Blue Gallery in Midtown East on Nov. 16 with additional shows on the 17, 18, and 19.